Sunday, October 20, 2013

October 20, 2013

As fall deepens its grasp on Lake Wicwas there are fewer and fewer boats on the lake, though several are still in the water eking out the last days of Indian Summer.

Every week there are a few fishermen and paddlers enjoying the above average temperatures. 

We have yet to have a hard frost, at least at our part of the lake, and we are well past the average first frost date of September 21 (according to the Farmer's Almanac).  Areas close to the lake will tend to be warmer in the fall due to the moderating affects of the warm water, but almost a month beyond average is pretty nice.

The foliage in the Lakes Region has moved from the bright reds and oranges of the maples, to the yellow and burnt oranges of the beech and oaks.  Their colors are not as vivid, but they still warm the soul with reminders of summer's warmth, especially when the late afternoon and early morning sun shines on them.
On a trip up Old Stanton Road I found a stand of beech trees forming a glowing tunnel with the October sun illuminating them from above.
Old Stanton Road
The beech, like the oaks, turn later and keep their leaves longer than most trees, some of them right through the winter.  These trees also both produce nuts which mature later in the season that the seeds of the maples;  perhaps that's why they need a somewhat longer growing season.

In the wind today the leaves were falling off the trees in droves, so the end is coming - in some areas they are already mostly on the ground.

As the leaves drop, we have have the benefit of greater visibility through the woods, exposing things not seen all summer.  Here a beaver lodge that has grown this summer has been revealed. 
Beaver Lodge
You can see the fresh cuts on the branches on top.  And some fungi growing on a fallen birch tree can now be seen.
Birch Polypore (Piptoporus betulinu)

There was also a bright Hunter's Moon visible on Thursday, here setting on Saturday morning.

 By the time we seen the next full moon, things will have changed a lot around Lake Wicwas.

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